How to Create a Color Array in Illustrator

A quick tutorial on how to create a color array with blend tool in Adobe Illustrator.

Color plays an important role in visuals, whether they’re diagrams, infographics, data visualizations, presentations or videos. No matter what your visual product is, a harmonious color palette will enhance the design.

If you’ve got a couple of base colors to work with (from a logo or photo, for example) and need a harmonious blend of colors, creating a color array in Illustrator will get you an additional set of colors to work with┬áthat are all related to the parent colors. Here’s how.

1) Create two squares with your parent colors in Illustrator as shown below. It helps to show the grid and snap to grid.



2) Select both of the squares.


3) Go to Object > Blend > Blend Options…



4) In the dialog box that pops up, select Specified Steps for Spacing and enter the number of new colors you’d like in you array – in this example, I’ve specified 5.



5) Now go to Object > Blend > Make.



6) Voila! Illustrator has created an array of colors based on, and related to the two parents.


As a side note, notice what happens at the borders of the new child colors in the array – visual effect known as halation – one of the ways to create luminosity in an image. But that will have to be the subject of some future post.